Trip to Sicily/Rome; need input

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Mar 20th, 2012, 09:48 AM
  #1
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Trip to Sicily/Rome; need input

I'll be travelling with my family (wife, 3 teens and 2 parents in their 70s) to Italy in July. We'll focus on Sicily (8 days, 9 nights) and Rome (4 days, 5 nights).

Below you'll see the draft itinerary. We will have a car (Mercedez Vito) in Sicily but we are not planning to have one in Rome. I'm looking for input on:
1) places to stay
2) any suggestions you may have to add/delete/modify my itinerary (flights are already locked)
3) "must see" suggestions


DAY# hotel activity
1 air Leaving USA
2 Palermo arriving in Palermo 12:50; Palermo visit in the afternoon/evening
3 Palermo day trip to Erice, Sale, Segesta
4 Agrigento Monreale; drive to Agrigento
5 Agrigento Agrigento/ Valle dei tempi
6 Siracusa trip to Siracuse with stops at Piazza Armerina, Caltagirone and Notto (time permitting)
7 Siracusa visit Siracuse
8 Taormina trip to Taormina in the morning; visit Greek Theater, Castelmola and Taormina
9 Taormina day trip to either Etna or Lipari/Volcano
10 Palermo-airport drive to Palermo; stop in Cefalu
11 Rome 12:30 flight to Rome (arrival 13:45); Rome visit
12 Rome Rome
13 Rome Vila Adriana
14 Rome Vatican
15 Rome Rome
16 back in USA all day flight back

Thanks/grazzie,

Jose
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Mar 20th, 2012, 10:46 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,142
1) Places to stay in Rome:

https://www.sleepinitaly.com/en/show...d_appartam=308 (5 bedroom apt. near Vatican - GREAT value at 270€/night)

https://www.sleepinitaly.com/en/show...d_appartam=398 (superb central location near Pantheon - one teen on sofa?)

http://www.residenzagiubbonari.com/i...d=5&Itemid=103 (super central, very nice, beds for 7, huge patio)


http://www.romecapitalapartments.com...ppy%20Days-260 (super central location near Campo dei Fiori - beds for all)

2) Itinerary looks fine.

3) The biggest "musts" for Rome, IMO, is just seeing the city and all it offers.

Here are a few walks (and associated maps) Adapt as time/energy allows.

http://www.frommers.com/destinations...064020033.html
http://www.frommers.com/images/desti...thecaesars.jpg

http://www.frommers.com/destinations...064020034.html
http://www.frommers.com/images/desti...eartofrome.jpg

http://www.frommers.com/destinations...064020035.html
http://www.frommers.com/images/desti...ssancerome.jpg (this my FAVORITE walk, FWIW)

http://www.frommers.com/destinations...064020036.html
http://www.frommers.com/images/desti...trastevere.jpg
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Mar 20th, 2012, 10:54 AM
  #3
 
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And my thoughts on the apartments I listed above: I would choose #1 only if budget is the biggest factor and #2, #3 & #4 are all too expensive for you.

Even though #1 is cheapest and has more bedrooms than the others, I would pay more for a slightly smaller place on the east side of the river in the Centro Storico (#2, 3 or 4) any day (budget allowing).
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Mar 20th, 2012, 11:50 AM
  #4
 
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When we do that trip, we usually like to take the overnight ferry. Leave the car in Sicily. Go to www.GNV.it they have it in English. You can also Google what other ferries there are. The time we took GNV the commuters were going to Sicily on Sunday night. They had music and singing. We had a great time. We have taken different ferries at different times from different locations and loved it every time. When you get to Civitavecchia you can take the train or have a service pick you up to go to Rome. Not much different than the airport.
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Mar 25th, 2012, 10:41 AM
  #5
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Thanks everyone!

The apartment suggestion for Rome was great! I booked one for me and my family. Now I need to work on the Sicilia stays...

Jose
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Mar 25th, 2012, 10:45 AM
  #6
 
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You might want to take a look at my trip report on Sicily; click on my name to find it. Just skip the medical section.
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Mar 25th, 2012, 11:05 AM
  #7
 
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The Sicily segment is a pretty rushed trip. Will you parents be able to keep up? Also, assuming you're arriving after a long, overnight flight, you need to allow a day or so for being jet-lagged and sleepy.

Most of us prefer not to drive in Palermo, yet alone use it as a base for day trips. As it is, you won't be seeing much of Palermo. You could just skip it. Or spend a couple days in Palermo before picking up your car. You can do Monreale as a day trip by bus from Palermo and also daytrip by train to Cefalu.

I gather you already have your plane tickets to Rome. Otherwise I'd suggest flying out of Catania rather than returning to Palermo.
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Mar 25th, 2012, 12:13 PM
  #8
 
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it is likely to be 100 degrees on a July afternoon in Sicily, especially in places like Agrigento. Is everybody up for that kind of heat and those long days?
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